Benfica to Cordoba (loan)
After days of speculation, Benfica confirmed yesterday the loan of Bebe to Cordoba until the end of the season. Bebe moved from Manchester United to Benfica in the summer and has found playing time non-existent at the club since his arrival. At Cordoba, Bebe will help the team fight for survival in La Liga, but the battle is an up-hill one, with the team currently sitting in 18th place.
By this point, fans of the sport are well aware of Bebe’s career up to this point. Homeless earlier in his career, Bebe eventually signed for Estrela Amadora in 2009, where he made 26 appearances for the team, which competed in the Portuguese Second Division (3rd tier). After his positive performances, Bebe was purchased by Liga Zon Sagres side Vitoria Guimaraes, where, after positive pre-season performances, he was signed by English Premier League giants Manchester United. At that point, very few had actually seen the winger play, and in-fact United’s coach Sir Alex Ferguson hadn’t even seen him play live, but pushed the transfer through after a glowing report from his former assistant coach and then Portugal National Team coach Carlos Queiroz.
Bebe’s time at Manchester United was tumultuous, to say the least. After hot and cold performances for the club, and loans to Besiktas and Rio Ave, Bebe joined Pacos Ferreira on loan. This time, he performed, scoring 12 goals in 27 games, finishing as the Primeira Liga’s top Portuguese scorer. This led to intense speculation on his history, and after drawn-out negotiations, Benfica signed the winger for around 3 million euros.
So, what does this mean for Benfica? For Bebe? For Benfica, it means that young star Goncalo Guedes will have more of a first-team role, as was predicted and expected by fans. The 17 year-old is one of the most precocious talents in the world game right now, and Benfica, realizing this, seem to be willing to give him a role in the team. His emergence, coupled with Bebe’s lack of playing time, is one of the factors that led to Bebe moving to Cordoba. For Bebe, this move could give him much-needed playing time, which could prove beneficial, especially in a league as strong as La Liga.